Heparin promotes the growth of human embryonic stem cells in a defined serum-free medium

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Publisher: National Academy of Sciences
Document Type: Author abstract; Report
Length: 181 words

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Abstract :

A major limitation in developing applications for the use of human embryonic stem cells (HESCs) is our lack of knowledge of their responses to specific cues that control self-renewal, differentiation, and lineage selection. HESCs are most commonly maintained on inactivated mouse embryonic fibroblast feeders in medium supplemented with FCS, or proprietary replacements such as knockout serum-replacement together with FGF-2. These undefined culture conditions hamper analysis of the mechanisms that control HESC behavior. We have now developed a defined serum-free medium, hESF9, for the culture of HESCs on a type I-collagen substrate without feeders. In contrast to other reported media for the culture of HESCs, this medium has a lower osmolarity (292 mosmol/liter), L-ascorbic acid-2-phosphate (0.1 [micro]g/ml), and heparin. Insulin, transferrin, albumin conjugated with oleic acid, and FGF-2 (10 ng/ml) were the only protein components. Further, we found that HESCs would proliferate in the absence of exogenous FGF-2 if heparin was also present. However, their growth was enhanced by the addition of FGF-2 up to 10 ng/ml although higher concentrations were deleterious in the presence of heparin. defined serum-free culture | feeder-free

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A185386372